Friday, February 25, 2011

Karate Club President !!

I'm really happy about joining Karate in june 2010 and I've been regular to the practice sessions since.
I was able to take to Karate quite easily as I've been playing sports on a regular basis which has ensured that I'm in good shape.
Attending two Gasshuku's (National Karate Camp) has only motivated me to pursue Karate more seriously. The first camp was the Waihi Beach camp where I got to see the Black belt grading event. This was an awesome experience. The guys getting graded were put to very tough tests which tested their physical and mental strength. I realized that you have to work really hard to be able to wear a black belt around your waist.
Apart from that we had very intense and strenuous training sessions, after which I was very satisfied to have been able to come through them.
The second camp was in Wellington, where we camped in Sensei Dave's house (a very kind gesture from him to allow us to stay in his place).
This camp had Sensei Higaonna as the Chief instructor. It was an honour to train the man who is the head of our organization, who at the age of 72 can still perform techniques with great speed and power. The camp had quite a few social outings where it was nice to meet people from other dojo's and make new friends.
The AGM of our club was held last week, and was quite special for me, as I was elected as the club president ! The one big goal I have is to organize a national camp in Auckland sometime next year.

Conquering the Demons

Demon No 1 - Object Oriented Programming (OOP)

For the computer programming challenged people, OOP is just a computer philosophy used to write computer programs.
It has 10 years now since I first wrote computer programs ( 10th std , Basic Programming) and have been writing them throughout my education and my work, but I have always somehow managed to not learn the OOP concepts.
It has always been at the back of my mind, and I think now is the right time to conquer this demon.
Having just completed my Masters and with the prospect of finding a job in SAP ABAP looking bleak, the reason to learning OOP concepts is all the more relevant.

Demon No 2: Toastmasters ! Its a club who meet every week, where members are given the opportunity to give speeches, talk at table topic sessions and participate in other communication building activities. It has been 8 years since I first started started attending toastmasters, which I discontinued after 2 years I think, for the fear of public speaking.
It has always been on mind, and I'm definitely going to start attending toastmaster again, and be able to speak confidently one day !

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Back from the dead

Hi guys,

Before I say anything, it has taken a lot of persuasion from my pal Ashwin, to start writing again. Thanks buddy.

Its been a really long time since I've written anything, and its been pretty eventful since then. I left my country to come to New Zealand to do my Masters in Computer Systems, and it is a totally new world out here in NZ. Met lots of new people, tried skiing, started learning Karate ( my goal is to get a black belt ! ), and have finished my degree with pretty decent grades.

Life in NZ has been pretty good, in terms of the friendly people around, the uni experience, awesome scenery and the excellent infrastructure.

I find it pretty dull here at times, but I guess that is pretty natural for someone coming from India.

Being active in sports has helped me pass time in a useful way.

There are wonderful tennis courts here in Auckland, which the people can use for free.

What has struck me here is that there are more resources and facilities and less number of people to use them. Empty parks, play grounds and tennis courts are a common sight.

Traffic is one thing that is getting onto everyone's nerves here. I strongly feel that if the NZ govt doesn't do something soon enough, they will have severe traffic problems to deal with in the future.

That apart the weather is pretty similar to India only more colder during winter and the sun more piercing.

Another plus point is that I have not experienced racism in any form till date, and hope I never do !

I was a bit apprehensive about racism before coming here, but all my fears have been allayed.

Availability of good vegetarian food is an issue sometimes, but now I've come to accept the fact that food is one of the biggest sacrifices I've had to make by coming to NZ.